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January 17, 2021 | Chris Baselice
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“Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.”—Joshua 1:8 (NIV)
What is biblical meditation? The best definition I can give you comes from Bible scholar and professor Donald Whitney, who said, “Meditation is deep thinking on the truths and spiritual realities revealed in Scripture for the purposes of understanding, application, and prayer.”
Meditation is one of the most effective means of growing in God’s grace, of understanding His purposes and plans on a deeper level, and walking in His power and peace in game-changing ways. That’s why today’s verse tells us to meditate on the Bible day and night.
I truly believe biblical meditation is the apex of our ability to receive and internalize God’s Word. It also happens to be one of the most misunderstood, underrated, and underutilized disciplines of the Christian life.
So, how can you practically meditate on God’s Word? As you study the Bible, be sure to carve out some time to just sit with what you’ve read. Think deeply on it, linger over it, let it marinate in your mind and ignite your heart, and then pray over what the Lord has revealed to you. And as you do, you’ll be living out Colossians 3:16 (NKJV), allowing “the Word of Christ [to] dwell in you richly.”
Before I close, I want to share a quote by theologian Thomas Watson that stuck with me and drove me to change regarding my Scripture engagement—and I hope it does the same for you. He said, “The reason we come away so cold from reading the Word is because we do not warm ourselves at the fire of meditation.”
Have you ever felt that way—like you read it and then it went nowhere, like you were left cold? I know I have! But ever since I implemented this practice a few years ago, I can tell you that it happens way less often. I want the same things for you! If there’s one thing you can take away from this reading plan on engaging with Scripture, one practice you truly embrace, I hope it’s a commitment to biblical meditation!
As you read this week, look for verses that stick out to you. Maybe you’ll happen upon a verse you feel drawn to, that you feel a tug or a pull to sit with. Press into that feeling as it’s the Holy Spirit! He wants you to meditate on that passage. Read it, study it, and then really reflect on it. Think deeply about each word, phrase, directive, and question posed in the passage. Consider what it says to you about God, yourself, and the world around you. Ponder how you can apply it, walk in it, experience it, and grow in faith, hope, and love through it. Then, pray on it throughout the week.
PAUSE: What makes biblical meditation different than worldly meditation?
PRACTICE: Meditate on a single passage this week. Maybe it will be Titus 3:4–7 or Psalm 23. Maybe it will be Romans 8:28–29. Whatever it is, let the Spirit direct you as you dissect it and dive into it.
PRAY: Father, I ask today that, by Your Holy Spirit, You would reveal truth to me this week as I meditate on Your Word. Show me Your wisdom, Your truth, and speak to me through this practice I am entering into. Help me, Lord, to stay consistent. Amen.